Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Manchegan Madness 20,000 Leagues Deep

Now this is what I call Manchegan Madness: an entire game company's studio designed to look like Captain Nemo's Nautilus in Jules Verne's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.

The offices have an attacking octopus couch, a secret lounge hidden behind a bookcase, captain's quarters and a steampunk bike rack, plus a ton of other Victorian details.
You've got to see it to believe it. Check out more pictures at

Hat tip to David Pescovitz at Boing Boing.

Saturday, June 2, 2007

More Jane Austen Addiction

Diana Birchall reviews the forthcoming book Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict:

You may be put off by hearing that it’s a form of “time travel” novel, which conjures up images of Harlequin romances where our heroine gets boinked by a Regency dude, but disabuse yourself - this is the luxury model of the genre. The difference is that Rigler writes beautifully and is a true genuine Austen addict herself...
See the rest of the review at Austenblog.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Freaky Free Movie Friday - Nosferatu

If you're looking for a little classic horror this weekend, have a look at F.W. Murnau's Nosferatu: A Symphony of Terror (1 gig). Released in 1922, this silent movie retells the Dracula story. A true cinematic classic.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Free Movie Friday Take 2: The Road to Bali

Enjoy this classic 1952 Bob Hope/Bing Crosby film that also stars Dorothy Lamour:

The Road to Bali (1 gig .mp4 file)

Thursday, May 17, 2007

More Jane Austen Madness

Someone has Manchegan Madness for for Jane Austen and they live in Jane Austen's World. What will you find there? Shopping, photos of Bath, Jane Austen icons, and much more.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Free Movie Friday: His Girl Friday

I'm beginning a new feature this week, Free Movie Friday, courtesy of Archive Classic Movies, a terrific site that features free public domain movies for downloading. Convert them to your iPod or other portable media player, or watch them on your desktop.

This weekend enjoy His Girl Friday, the classic screwball comedy starring Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell. WARNING: This file is over a gigabyte in size, so keep that in mind before downloading. Download the movie by right clicking here. (1gig .mp4 file)

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Jane Austen in Stitches

The Sampler Girl has a set of Jane Austen cross stitch designs, for those addicted to sewing and to Jane (and I know you're out there).

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Lord of the Rings on Stage

Check out the videos for this amazing stage show of Lord of the Rings. It opened tonight in London at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane.

All I have to say is, you can't really do Tolkien on a small scale.

Sunday, May 6, 2007

Don Quixote's International Music Hall

If you're near Santa Cruz, California, you might want to stop by Don Quixote's International Musical Hall to enjoy a meal and some music.

Friday, May 4, 2007

400 Windmills has the Madness

More wonderful Manchegan Madness can be found at 400 Windmills:

This site is dedicated to a reading and discussion of Cervante's masterpiece, The Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote of La Mancha.

To see a listing of all entries, visit our Archives page. Or you can start from the beginning.

Although we have completed our reading, we will have posts here from time to time when interesting resources come available related to Don Quixote.
I love it!

Don Quixote in Akron Tomorrow Night

If you 've got Manchegan Madness and you live in Akron, Ohio, be sure to attend the Akron Symphony's performace of Richard Strauss' tone poem, Don Quixote tomorrow night at 7 pm. For more details, see the story in the Beacon Journal.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Alice in Wonderland Gives Cory Doctorow Manchegan Madness

Even Cory over at Boing Boing has MM. He just purchased a set of Alice in Wonderland dishes. You can see the rest of them over at Fishs Eddy. I wonder if they make you shrink if you eat food off of them...

Guess Which Beautiful Celebrity Has Manchegan Madness

As if there weren't enough reasons to love Gloria Estefan:

Hat tip to Sylvia at Classical Bookworm.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Sherlock Holmes in 3D - No Glasses Required

Combine two obsessions in one: for those addicted to video games and Sherlock Holmes comes the new Sherlock Holmes - The Awakened, a 3-D video game for the computer. Here are a couple of screenshots:

The game looks a bit gruesome, but it received an 8.3 out 10 at Gamespot.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Amanda Grange Visits the Jane Austen Society

Author Amanda Grange (Mr. Darcy's Diary) writes about her visit with the Jane Austen Society.

Apparently a lot of people are mad for Miss Austen--there's a UK Jane Austen Society as well as North American and Australian groups (and let's not forget Buenos Aires).

ROMAN Reading Will Make You Mad for Books

My new eBook ROMAN Reading: 5 Practical Skills for Transforming Your Life through Literature is available for free today!

Download ROMAN Reading (1.86 mb) and in less than an hour you'll have learned reading skills that last a lifetime. I've been teaching these skills for over sixteen years, and I can teach you. For free.

Why? Because I have a mission, and I want you to share it with me.

The mission? Changing lives one page at a time. I want to make the world a more literate place, a place where people think for themselves, learn about their world, and share their ideas with each other.

A literate world is a world of peace, tolerance and vision. We've got our work cut out for us.

To help accomplish this mission, I'm giving this eBook away for free.

But I need your help. I need you to turn this eBook into a virus that sweeps the world, a reading infection that keeps spreading itself from friend to friend, reader to reader. We need to get this book into the hands of reading groups, teachers, homeschoolers, high school and college students, and interested readers of all ages.

How can you help?

  • Download the book and read it!
  • Share it with all your friends.
  • Visit often for more tips on reading literature. (Linking to it would help too!)
  • Sign up for the ROMAN Reading newsletter at FreeIQ.
Together we can make the world a more literate place by changing lives one page at a time.

Monday, April 30, 2007

A Surprise as the Madness Increases Tomorrow

My own case of Manchegan Madness is about to progress to a new level. Tomorrow I have a Big Announcement to make, and I hope you can join me as I try to make a difference in the world (Is that hint vague enough?).

Don Quixote had a mission, and so do I. I just hope mine doesn't appear as crazy as his.

Here's a visual hint:

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Sherlock Holmes and Nero Wolfe Cause Manchegan Madness

If you're a fan of mystery novels, you might enjoy Jack and Beverly's collection of Sherlock Holmes memorabilia, but the real example of Manchegan Madness today comes from The Wolfe Pack, a society devoted to detective Nero Wolfe:

The Wolfe Pack, founded in 1978, is dedicated to the celebration of America's greatest - and largest - detective, Nero Wolfe, and his world. The Pack publishes a semiannual journal, the Gazette, and sponsors several events each year including a shad roe dinner in the spring and, our oldest tradition, The Black Orchid Banquet, in December.
Check out the society's website where you can join in Nero Wolfe book discussions, learn about winners of the Nero Wolfe award, and explore the A&E Nero Wolfe TV series. There's even a link to a set of Nero Wolfe dolls. Madness indeed.

Friday, April 27, 2007

London's Charles Dickens Theme Park about to Open

Dickens World, a twisted blend of Disneyland and Newgate Prison, is set to open on May 25, 2007 in Chatham, Kent, England. The Dickens theme park (can I use those words in the same sentence?) features attractions based on works like Nicholas Nickleby, Oliver Twist and The Mystery of Edwin Drood. According to the official website:

The experience will feature a Dickensian Shopping Mall, together with a multitude of attractions and rides, including a mix of themed restaurants, bars and a multiplex cinema. Dickens World will also have facilities for seasonal variations, particularly over the Christmas period in which the attraction will convert into a Dickensian winter wonderland, replete with snow and other characteristics of a bygone era, complemented by a magnificent water feature which over the festive season changes into a spectacular 'ice fantasia' dominated by 'The Spirit of Christmas', 'JackFrost', 'Scrooge' and a host of other delightful characters who magically come to life. This and other seasonal events throughout the year an unforgettable experience for visitors of all ages.

A series of 'burlesque' evening dinner shows are being especially created to provide a nightly menu of 'naughty delights' in the 'Free and Easy' Victorian Music Hall.
A "Dickensian Shopping Mall"? "Naughty delights"? Now that's what I call madness--Manchegan Madness!

Thursday, April 26, 2007

A Prejudice for All Things Austen

Sylvia from Classical Bookworm sent in a link to The Republic of Pemberley, a site devoted to all things Jane Austen. Here's how the site defines itself: "Your haven in a world programmed to misunderstand obsession with things Austen"--definitely symptoms of Manchegan Madness.

If you visit, make sure to see Lady Catherine & Co. for "tongue-in-cheek advice from JA characters."

As Sylvia says, "I'm afraid there is not much hope for them, but perhaps it can be a lesson for the rest of us."

Thanks for the link, Sylvia. I think you're right about Pemberley--they've gone past the point of no return.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Not Even Bilbo Could Fit in This Hobbit Hole

Obelia medusa has created a doll-sized version of Bag-end from The Lord of the Rings. You really must see this to believe it:

You can see how she made it here.

Apologies to the readers of Literary Compass for the duplicate post, but I just had to mention it here because it's such a perfect example of Manchegan Madness.

Attention Horatio Hornblower Addicts

If you're addicted to the Horatio Hornblower books and movies then make sure you visit Scaryfangirl's Hornblower site. In her own words:

Welcome to ScaryFangirl.Com, a place for those who are (or would like to be) obsessed with C.S. Forester's nautical hero, Horatio Hornblower. This site is dedicated to the multiple dimensions of the Hornblower fandom, from the books to the movies, encompassing both the studious and the remarkably silly. It is my hope that Hornblower junkies the world over will find something here to brighten their day whether their tastes run to the historical or the hysterical. Enjoy!
While you're there don't miss HH Fans, to Me! a video to support the effort to bring Hornblower back to the big screen.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Manchegan Madness in the Blogosphere

Another manifestation of the madness occurs in the blogosphere. Here are some people who've got full blown cases:

If you (or a "friend") has a literary-themed blog then leave a comment or send me an email. Remember, the first step in breaking free of Manchegan Madness is to admit you have a problem.

The Madness Continues

It seems that Manchegan Madness affects children as well as as adults. From an article by the BBC:

We named my cat Sirius, tribute to Harry Potter's godfather. It suits him because he is an all black cat!
-Alison, 12, London

My two rats are named Pippin and Arwen because my sister and I are mad Lord of the Rings fans.
-Tanya, 13, Orpington
My cats are called Merry and Pippin. We named them after characters in Lord of the Rings.
-Ruahdhan, 11, Gravesend
These are the youngest documented cases of MM, and researchers are having a difficult time determining if the disease is also spread through watching movies.

Monday, April 23, 2007

A Quest to Save Readers Everywhere - The Story of Manchegan Madness

As a public service to the health of the literary community, I wrote a post on my literary blog titled Do You Recognize the 7 Signs of Manchegan Madness? When I saw more people coming down with symptoms I followed that article with Another Outbreak of Manchegan Madness?

This bibliophilic disease is one of most neglected disorders in the medical world. Its first victim was the Knight of the Sorrowful Face, the incomparable Don Quixote of La Mancha, from whom it gets its name. You can read about his battle with Manchegan Madness in The Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote of La Mancha.

Today I decided it it was time to speak out. You see, I am one of the afflicted.

By sharing my story, and by chronicling the spread of this insidious disease, I hope to prevent others from suffering needlessly. If this blog saves only one life, it will be worth it.

How can you tell if you are a victim?

  • Is your user name Frodo or Galadriel?
  • Do you have a fish named Pride and one named Prejudice?
  • Do you call your dog Oedipus Rex?
  • Have you changed all the labels on your children's modeling clay to Plato?
If so, then you may have Manchegan Madness. Send me your story, and I will share it with the world.

This is my quest--to follow that star. No matter how hopeless. No matter how far.

Together we can make a difference.